TURSKA – TURKEY – TÜRKIYE

Kula Galata-Galata Tower in Istanbul

Kula Galata-Galata Tower in Istanbul

Nacionalni park Goreme i stene Kapadokije- Goreme National Park and the Rock Sites of Cappadocia

Nacionalni park Goreme i stene Kapadokije- Goreme National Park and the Rock Sites of Cappadocia

Nacionalni restoran-National restaurant

Nacionalni restoran-National restaurant

Ples dervisa-Dervish dance

Ples dervisa-Dervish dance

Przena riba na Bosforu-Grilled fish at Bosphorus

Przena riba na Bosforu-Grilled fish at Bosphorus

Sarayburnu razdvaja Zlatni rog od Mramornog mora-Seraglio Point is a promontory separating the Golden Horn and the Sea of Marmara in Istanbul

Sarayburnu razdvaja Zlatni rog od Mramornog mora-Seraglio Point is a promontory separating the Golden Horn and the Sea of Marmara in Istanbul

Sultan Ahmedova ili Plava dzamija - Sultan Ahmed or Blue Mosque

Sultan Ahmedova ili Plava dzamija – Sultan Ahmed or Blue Mosque

Sultan Ahmedova ili Plava dzamija-Sultan Ahmed or Blue Mosque

Sultan Ahmedova ili Plava dzamija-Sultan Ahmed or Blue Mosque

Vojni muzej-The Military Museum at Harbiye in Istanbul

Vojni muzej-The Military Museum at Harbiye in Istanbul

Aja Sofija u Istanbulu-A view of Ayasofya, Istanbul

Aja Sofija u Istanbulu-A view of Ayasofya, Istanbul

Brodovi na Bosforu s pogledom na kulu Galata-Ships on the Bosphorus with the view of Galata Tower

Brodovi na Bosforu s pogledom na kulu Galata-Ships on the Bosphorus with the view of Galata Tower

Eski dzamija u Jedrenu-Eski Mosque Edirne

Eski dzamija u Jedrenu-Eski Mosque Edirne

Kapali carsija-Kapali-carsi- Grand Bazaar in Istanbul

Kapali carsija-Kapali-carsi- Grand Bazaar in Istanbul

Kelsosova biblioteka u Efesu blizu Izmira-Library of Celsus in Ephesus near Izmir

Kelsosova biblioteka u Efesu blizu Izmira-Library of Celsus in Ephesus near Izmir

Prva, duhovita asocijacija na Tursku je noćna vožnja Istanbulom sa prijateljima, kada smo pomenuli jednog našeg bivšeg i nepopularnog predsednika neprevodivom rečju baksuz, na šta se taksista diskretno nasmejao, prepoznajući i reč i osobu o kojoj se govorilo. A zatim je sledio nastavak sličnim rečima, ali takođe neprevodivog karaktera – mufljuz, ugursuz – koje su se odnosile na istu osobu. Duboki koreni koji povezuju moj i turski narod uglavnom se tumače ogromnim periodom od približno pet stotina godina, koliko su Turci vladali ovim krajevima, što ipak više govori o osvajaču nego o porobljenom. Često se u šali kaže da smo mi Turke pokvarili. Ipak, veličina Otomanskog carstva, koja se ogleda u lepoti istanbulskih palata, nije samo u njima; ona je i u tom narodu koji je, pre svega, veoma blizak Srbima. Naravno, ne po vrednoći, jer Turci su uglavnom veoma radni i danas u mnogim oblastima predstavljaju velesilu.

Krstarenje Bosforom otkriva lepote tog grada, koje tako emotivno opisuje Orhan Pamuk u svojim knjigama. Na južnoj obali Turske nalaze se lokaliteti koji asociraju na grčku mitologiju, koja je upravo ovde nastajala, dok se dalje ka istoku prelazi na autentični Orijent. Turska zaista ima sve: prirodne, nekad nestvarne lepote kao što su Pamuk Kale ili Kapadokija; istoriju osvajanja “pola sveta” u vreme Otomanskog carstva, kao i današnji procvat u ekonomskom i naučnom smislu. To je velika nacija dobrih ljudi koja tihim jedinstvom svojih unutrašnjih snaga postepeno osvaja svet. Ponovo ga osvaja, ali ne geografske prostore kao nekada, već intelektualno i politički. U svetskim naučnim časopisima veliki broj radova dolazi iz Turske, a približavanje Evropskoj uniji je brzo i neumitno. Iako je samo malim delom svoje teritorije na evropskom tlu, ona je više Evropa od mnogih, ali i prava Azija u najboljem smislu te reči. Skoro idealna.

Sa kamene terase hotela Çiragan Palace posmatram brodove kako prolaze Bosforom i razmišljam o usponu i padu turske imperije, o njenim sultanima, od kojih su neki potekli i sa Balkana, kao Sulejman Veličanstveni, o neverovatnom bogatstvu koje se vekovima slivalo u  Konstantinopolj, o načinu razmišljanja i vladavine svetom. Nije lako vladati, veoma dugo održati tu vladavinu i, najvažnije, nametnuti svoj način mišljenja, tako da vekovima kasnije te nekada pokorene teritorije osećaju jednu vrstu iskonske povezanosti sa Turskom. To govori kakav treba da bude pravi vladar, a sultani su to zaista znali i umeli.

Pusto tursko.

 

Septembar 1998.

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The first funny episode that comes to mind is a night time taxi ride in Istanbul with my friends; once we mentioned our unpopular ex-President using the untranslatable word baksuz*, the taxi driver smiled discreetly recognising the word and the person in question. And then we continued in a similar fashion, but also with untranslatable words like mufljuz, ugursuz* – all referring to the same person. The deep roots that link Serbian and Turkish people are mostly due to the long period, of approximately 500 years, during which Turks ruled these regions; this speaks more of the conqueror then of the conquered. It is often said as a joke, that we have corrupted the Turks. Yet, the greatness of the Ottoman Empire, reflected in the beauty of Istanbul palaces, is not only in them; it is also in these people, who are first of all, really close to us. Of course, they differ from us in their diligence, because Turkish people are mostly hard working people and today in many domains their country is a superpower.

Cruising down the Bosphorus reveals the attractions of this city, described with such emotions in the books of Orhan Pamuk. The south coast of Turkey is graced with localities that are reminiscent of Greek mythology, which actually originated here, whereas the authentic Orient lies further in the east. Turkey really has it all: natural attractions, sometimes surreal in their beauty, such as Pamukkale or Cappadocia; the history of ruling ‘half the world’ at the heyday of the Ottoman Empire, as well as flourishing in economics and science today. This is a superpower of good people who are conquering the world again with the quiet unity of their inner strength. They are conquering the world again, but not its geographical space as before, but its intellectual and political space.  International scientific magazines feature many articles from Turkey while getting closer to the European Union is becoming faster and inevitable. Even though only a small part of Turkey’s territory is in Europe, in many ways this country is more European than some others; but it is also Asian in the best possible meaning of the word. Almost ideal.

I observe ships gliding down the Bosphorus from the stone terrace of the Çiragan Palace Hotel; I ponder the rise and fall of the Turkish Empire, its sultans, some of whom originated in the Balkans, such as Suleiman the Magnificent; about the incredible wealth that poured into Constantinople over the centuries, about their way of thinking and ruling the world. It is not easy to rule and even more importantly, to maintain this rule for centuries; and most importantly, to impose their way of thinking so that centuries later, those countries that were part of the empire still feel a deep, primal connection with Turkey. This shows what a true ruler should be like – and the Sultans really knew how to do it.

‘A lion sleeps in the heart of every brave man’ (A Turkish proverb).

*baksuz – person who brings misfortune to others, unlucky

*mufljuz, ugursuz –also words of Turkish origin in Serbian, denoting someone with negative qualities such as ungenerous; stubborn and morose

September 1998

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